The Summer Heroes
The Silver Crown of Brightwater was commissioned as the new, official crown of the monarchy of the Kingdom of Brightwater in 409 BR, to coincide with the completion of the Silver Palace. The use of silver as the primary material in the crown was an acknowledgment of the silver mines that had been discovered in the first year of Auria’s reign and which had fueled the subsequent economic boom in the city. The crown is usually referred to simply as “Auria’s Crown” as she was the only monarch to wear it: In 434 BR, Auria laid the crown at the feet of General Tortos, the head of the army dispatched by the Sorian Empire to conquer the Penwith Islands, as a symbol of her abdication.
The Penwith Uprising that followed Auria’s abdication lasted for about a year and witnessed the Scourge of Penwith, a terrible event that resulted in the destruction of the cities of Starll and Tintern. At the end of the Uprising, Auria was executed. Following her abdication, however, Auria was never seen with the Silver Crown, and after her execution General Tortos declared that the crown had been destroyed. Tortos noted that, after being melted, the silver from the crown was forged into new Brightwater Angels (the currency of the city), so that the citizens of Brightwater would “never know if their coins were made of the crown of their defeated queen, and always remember the consequences of rebellion against the Imperial throne thereby”. No claims were made to the contrary, and this story was accepted.
The crown itself is a masterful piece of silver-smithing. It is a more properly a tiara than a crown, despite its name, and the silver that composes it is wrought into fine, delicate swoops and swirls. In the front-center of the crown is a depiction of the angel Azariel, the patron of Brightwater, with a trident in his left hand and a lantern in his right. The detail of the crown is exceptional, and many of the sea-related motifs cannot be seen except up close. Aside from the silver, the crown is decorated with numerous tiny diamonds and sapphires. The initial craftsman of the crown, Umberton Sixfingers (d. 491 BR) (so-called because of the six fingers on his right hand, a defect never corrected with magic and what was later said to augment his enormous talent as a metalworker), aimed to produce a piece of royal regalia that was understated and elegant, and so shied away from the use of enormous precious stones. In this it was generally agreed that he was successful, as the crown glittered and shone even in faint light, and its beauty was widely recorded before it was lost.